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“Success Comes Down to Mitigating Power Consumption” – ASME on Motiv’s Lunar Robotic Arm

(Pasadena, California – April 26, 2021)

There are thousands of factors that go into a successful lunar mission. Planning. Engineering. Design, materials and execution.

One that often gets overlooked? Power consumption.

An article on Motiv’s COLDArm, published by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, goes into more detail. On the lunar surface, a robotic arm’s capabilities are limited to the power available. That power has to be generated by solar panels, and stored in batteries.

The less power a robotic arm consumes in carrying out its mission, the more power is available for other things.

That’s why COLDArm’s ability to function at temperatures down to -279°F, without supplemental heat, can be a big asset to lunar missions.

Assuming each joint takes about 10 watts of power, that’s about 40 watts saved, cutting the power requirement by half, under typical average usage. Every bit helps, because space missions need to generate their own power after they land, and they rely on solar panels or radioisotopes carried on board for this purpose.

Motiv’s principal mechanical engineer, Richard Fleischner, goes into some of the challenges in creating COLDArm, and what they mean for future missions. Get the full details from The American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Learn how the Cold Operable Lunar Deployable Arm (COLDArm) is a collaborative effort between NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and Motiv.

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